Tuesday, January 17, 2017

The Hill

Just ONE example, and the example I feel most qualified to comment on, as this is my field of study and my profession of nearly 25 years. She has no experience with the public education system she would be put in charge of, which she plans to decimate and make further polarized on socioeconomic lines anyway. She doesn't know the difference between proficiency and growth. Proficiency is "can they do it to THIS level?" whatever THIS is. So if a learner is high above that level, no one will care or help that learner go farther. And if a learner can't meet that level, due to factors beyond their control, they get written off as unsalvageable, regardless of how much learning and progress they might have made in a school year or other period of time. Senator Franken's focus, and I agree with him, is on growth. How much has the learner grown from where they started this school year? How can we maximize that growth and help the learner continue to grow once they've left our class/school/district to be able to make a positive impact on society? When we only focus on proficiency, we clearly state that we only care about making a certain grade or passing a certain test, and not on learning that is meaningful and valuable. We didn't go into education to measure proficiency. We went into education because we love kids and want to help them grow and meet their fullest potential.
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